Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Chicken and Egg-Tart Problem

I’m still doing my pedestrian survey of Oakland. Lately I’ve been purposely walking the less bustling parts of the city because while I was walking Chinatown, I saw many stores and restaurants I wanted to come back to, and I’m still working on that backlog. I want to visit all those places before I discover too many distracting new ones.

That means that lately, I’ve been walking around the semi-industrial areas on the outskirts of Jack London Square, and near the railroad tracks. They’re actually pretty interesting in their own rough way. There’s a lot more going on than I expected. It doesn’t feel deserted or creepy, and I discovered some nice little parks and pedestrian paths along the estuary that I didn’t know about.

Still, I have to admit that I’m having a lot more fun exploring the bakeries and cafés of Chinatown. I found two great snack shops, both on Webster Street. The Shooting Star Café has two treats Pipi and I have been meaning to try: lemon coke and condensed milk toast. (Don’t worry; we won’t have them both in the same sitting. We know our limits.)

The other, Sweet Home Bakery, is an even better find, I think. There is no place to sit, but you can get three egg-custard tarts for a dollar, and milk tea is only a dollar more.

I love egg tarts. I had three yesterday. I bought a bag in the afternoon, and by the time I was done with dinner, I’d eaten two of them. I very magnanimously saved one for Pipi to eat after Chinese class. By a strange co-incidence, she came home with her own bag of tarts. I ate the one offered to me because it would have been rude to refuse a gift, right?

What does this have to do with anything? Nothing, really. I just needed to confess my sin of gluttony. (There are still two egg tarts in the refrigerator. I’ve managed to keep myself from them all day so far.)

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